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Disability Support Worker

No Formal Qualifications On The Job Training VOC Course Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred Working With Children check Police Check First Aid Licence Year 10 Preferred

Also known as Developmental Care Worker, Home Support Worker, Nursing Assistant (Disability Support), Personal Care Worker (Disability Support) and Special Care Worker.

Disability support workers provide care, supervision and support for people with disabilities in the home, residential establishments, clinics and hospitals.

They also work with other health professionals to maximise the individual's physical and mental wellbeing.

They also provide companionship and emotional support, and when possible promote independence and community participation.

Disability support workers work in private homes and community establishments. They may be required to work evenings, weekends and public holidays and may be required to live on the premises.

Some positions may be casual.

With experience and further training, disability support workers can become enrolled or registered nurses. See the separate entries for Nurse - Enrolled and Nurse - Registered for details.


    Disability support workers may perform the following tasks:

  • assist people with self-medication
  • implement care programmes for those in residential establishments
  • provide in-home support with health issues and daily living tasks such as washing, dressing, eating, transport and budgeting
  • assist with the delivery of activities to enhance the physical, social, emotional and intellectual development of those in their care
  • ensure that those in their care are washed, dressed, fed and ready for educational and recreational activities
  • assist those in their care, during domestic activities such as eating meals and showering
  • provide companionship and support during daily activities
  • cook and serve meals, clean premises, wash, iron and perform other household tasks
  • organise refuge accommodation
  • work with a team of health professionals, family, friends and carers to implement a programme of support


  • patient, flexible and understanding
  • supportive and caring nature
  • commitment to the rights of people with disabilities to live dignified lives
  • able to accept responsibility
  • good communication skills
  • able to work as part of a team
  • able to cope with the physical demands of the job
  • able to perform domestic duties efficiently
Very Good Outlook
Very Good Outlook for this career!

Interest Area

Helping/Community Service Influencing/Personal Contact Medical


Attendant Care Worker - concentrates on providing personal care assistance to people with disability in the home or workplace. These duties may include bathing, lifting, moving, dressing, grooming, exercising or feeding people with disability.

Home Care Worker - provides in-home assistance and care for people unable to care for themselves and/or their families because of sickness, disability or old age.


No Formal Qualifications On The Job Training VOC Course Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred Working With Children check Police Check First Aid Licence Year 10 Preferred

You can work as a disability support worker without formal qualifications. You will probably get some formal training on the job.

Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications or experience working with people who require care.

You may like to consider a VOC qualification in disability, home and community care or mental health. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You may be able to study through distance education.

You can also become a disability support worker through a traineeship in Disability, Home and Community Care or Mental Health.

Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.

Additional Information

    To work with children in NSW, you must obtain a Working with Children Check from the Office of the Children's Guardian. To work with children in the ACT, you need to obtain a Working with Vulnerable People Check from the Office of Regulatory Services. You must also obtain a National Police Certificate and a Provide First Aid Certificate.

    Once you are employed, you may be able to develop, and have recognised, additional skills under the Community Services Training Package that will expand your career opportunities within this industry.

    A drivers licence and form of transport is essential for those providing community and home support care.


Disability support workers are employed by community health centres, local government authorities, private hospitals, private residences and multidisciplinary health centres in rural areas.

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More Information - External Links

Job Outlook for Disability Support Worker Carers Australia Health Services Union NDIS NSW Working with Children Check Office of Regulatory Services (ACT)

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